July 20th: On this Day
1940, Billboard’s first comprehensive record chart was published. The magazine had previously published best-seller lists submitted by the individual record companies, but the new chart combined the top sellers from all major labels. Their first number one song was ‘I’ll Never Smile Again’ by Frank Sinatra and the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra.
1954, The Blue Moon Boys made their live debut appearing on the back of a flatbed truck outside a new drug store for its grand opening in Memphis. The band line up was Elvis Presley Scotty Moore and Bill Black. The name was taken from a song they had recorded just two weeks previously, ‘Blue Moon of Kentucky.’
1963, Jan and Dean started a two week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Surf City’, written by The Beach Boys, Brian Wilson, with the Beach Boys on backing vocals. The single peaked at No.26 in the UK.
1968, Cream started a four-week run at No.1 on the US album chart with ‘Wheels Of Fire’. The double album which consisted of a studio and a live record reached No.3 in the United Kingdom.
1968, Iron Butterfly’s second album, ‘In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida’, entered the US album chart for the first time. The album contained the 17-minute title track that filled the second side of the LP which went on sell over four million copies in the US alone.
1968, Jane Asher announced on the national British TV show, Dee Time, that her engagement to Paul McCartney was off. Paul reportedly was watching at a friend’s home and was surprised by the news. She was said to have inspired many of McCartney’s songs, such as ‘All My Loving’, ‘And I Love Her’, and ‘We Can Work It Out’. Jane went on to have a career in films and television as well as becoming a successful author and business woman.
1971, The Carpenters show ‘Make Your Own Kind Of Music’, started a six week run on NBC-TV.
1973, TV talent show Opportunity Knocks winners Peters And Lee were at No.1 on the UK singles chart with their first single and only chart topper ‘Welcome Home.’
1975, Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band played the opening night on their Born To Run Tour at The Palace Theatre, Providence, Rhode Island. This also saw the live debut of Steven Van Zandt, (Miami Steve) as a member of The E Street Band.
1976, Buzzcocks made their live debut supporting the Sex Pistols and Slaughter & The Dogs at The Lesser Free Trade Hall, Manchester. In the audience was, Morrissey, Bernard Sumner, Peter Hook (soon to form Joy Division) and Mark E Smith, (The Fall) and Mick Hucknall. Tickets cost £1.
1977, Gary Kellgren studio engineer at the Los Angeles Record Plant studio drowned in a Hollywood Swimming pool. Kellgren had worked with John Lennon, George Harrison, Jimi Hendrix, Barbra Streisand and Rod Stewart.
1986, The film based on the life of Sex Pistols bassist, Sid Vicious, ‘Sid And Nancy’ premiered in London, England.
1986, Carlos Santana celebrated his 39th birthday, and 20th anniversary in the music business, with a concert in San Francisco. Previous group members were assembled for the event, as 17 of them performed together on stage.
1991, EMF went to No.1 on the US singles chart with ‘Unbelievable’ it spent 14 weeks on the chart before reaching the top.
1996, Gary Barlow scored his first UK No.1 single with ‘Forever Love’ taken from his debut album Open Road. Barlow became the first member of Take That to top the charts with a solo record.
1999, Church group’s in middle America claimed that pictures of Britney Spears printed in Rolling Stone magazine encouraged child pornography. The shots showed Britney with not many clothes on in her bedroom.
1999, The Rolling Stones reported a gross income of $337 million, (£168m), from almost two years of touring from their Bridges to Babylon and No Security tours. The Stones had played to over 5.6 million people, selling out all but 20 shows.
2000, The Evergreen Ballroom in Lacey, Washington was destroyed by a fire. During the ballroom’s heyday in the 1950s, 60s and 70s, many of music’s greats played there: Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Duke Ellington, Chuck Berry, Little Richard, Ike & Tina Turner and Fats Domino. Glen Campbell had lived in the kitchen at the venue for a while before he became famous.
2003, A tooth said to have been pulled out of Elvis Presley’s mouth after an injury failed to sell on the auction site eBay . The tooth had been put on a 10-day sale with a reserve price of $100,000 (£64,100). Bids had pushed the price up to $2m (£1.28m) but they were later found out to be fraudulent.
2008, Rapper DMX was arrested on suspicion after he gave a false name to get out of paying for hospital medical expenses. County Sheriff Joe Arpaio said the star told Mayo Clinic in Arizona that his name was Troy Jones and failed to pay a $7,500 (£3,752) bill in April. The rapper whose real name is Earl Simmons – was arrested at a shopping centre in Phoenix.
2008, John Lydon denied claims by Kele Okereke from Bloc Party that he was racially abused and attacked by a member of the Sex Pistols’ entourage at a music festival in Barcelona. Okereke claimed he had been attacked by several men after approaching Lydon backstage at the Summercase festival. He said the ‘unprovoked’ attack left him with a split lip and bruises. Lydon said: ‘I feel very sorry for a man that needs to lie about what was a perfect evening.’
2009, Jackson Browne settled his lawsuit against US Senator John McCain and the Republican Party after his 1977 hit ‘Running On Empty’ was used without permission in a 2008 McCain presidential campaign ad that aired on TV and the Internet. McCain and the Republican Party apologized for using the song in the ad and said that McCain himself “had no knowledge of, or involvement in, the creation or distribution of the video.”
2011, Never-before seen photographs of The Beatles’ first US concert in Washington DC sold in New York for more than $360,000 (£223,600). The Fab Four played their first US concert on February 11 1964, at the Washington Coliseum, two days after their debut on The Ed Sullivan Show. Mike Mitchell, of Washington, was 18 at the time and took photographs just feet away. Among the highlights was a backlit photograph Mitchell shot while standing directly behind the Fab Four which sold for more than $68,000 dollars.
2015, American country musician, songwriter and record producer Wayne Carson died at the age of 72 after suffering congestive heart failure. He co-wrote ‘Always on My Mind’, (a hit for Elvis Presley, Willie Nelson and others), ‘The Letter’, (recorded by The Box Tops, Joe Cocker and Leon Russell), and ‘Soul Deep’.
July 20th: Born on this day
1933, Born on this day, Buddy Knox, singer, songwriter, (1957 US No.1 & UK No.29 single ‘Party Doll’). He was the first person in the rock’n’roll era to write and record a number one hit. Very few 1950s singers wrote their own songs.
1945, Born on this day, John Lodge, bass, vocals, The Moody Blues, (1965 UK No.1 & US No.10 single ‘Go Now’ and 1968 UK No.19 & 1972 US No.2 single ‘Nights In White Satin’).
1945, Born on this day, Kim Carnes, US female singer, (1981 US No.1 & UK No.10 single ‘Betty Davis Eyes’).
1946, Born on this day, Wendy Richard, actress, (1962 UK No.1 single with Mike Sarne, ‘Come Outside’, cast member of UK TV soap ‘Eastenders’).
1947, Born on this day, Carlos Santana, Mexican and American rock guitarist. Santana had the 1977 UK No.11 single ‘She’s Not There’, and their 1999 US No.1 single ‘Smooth’ spent eleven weeks at No.1, (also No.1 in the UK). He won eight Grammy Awards for his Supernatural album at the 2000 awards.
1947, Born on this day, Tony Thorpe, The Rubettes, (1974 UK No.1 single ‘Sugar Baby Love’).
1952, Born on this day, Jay Jay French, guitar, Twisted Sister, (1983 UK No.18 single ‘I Am, I’m Me’, 1984 album ‘Stay Hungry’).
1955, Born on this day, Jem Finer, banjo, The Pogues, (1987 UK No.8 single ‘The Irish Rover’, 1987 UK No.2 single with Kirsty MaCcoll, ‘Fairytale Of New York’).
1955, Born on this day, Marisa DeFranco, The DeFranco Family, (1973 US No.3 single ‘Heartbeat- It’s A Lovebeat’, biggest selling US single of 73, based on The Osmonds, featured 10 year old Tony DeFranco).
1956, Born on this day, Paul Cook, drums, Sex Pistols, (1977 UK No.2 single ‘God Save The Queen’, and 1977 UK No.1 album Never Mind The Bollocks, Here’s The Sex Pistols’.
1958, Born on this day, Michael McNeil, keyboards, Simple Minds, (1985 US No.1 single ‘Don’t You, Forget About Me’, 1989 UK No.1 single ‘Belfast Child’, plus over 20 other UK Top 40 singles).
1959, Born on this day, James Irvin, vocals, Furniture, (1986 UK No.21 single ‘Brilliant Mind’).
1962, Born on this day, Dig Wayne, Jo Boxers, (1983 UK No.3 single ‘Boxer Beat’).
1964, Born on this day, American musician, singer and songwriter Chris Cornell, best known as the lead vocalist, primary songwriter and rhythm guitarist for Seattle rock band Soundgarden and as lead vocalist and songwriter for the group Audioslave. Cornell died suddenly in Detroit on 17 May 2017 after performing at a show with Soundgarden.
1966, Born on this day, Andrew Levy, bass, The Brand New Heavies, (1994 UK No.13 single ‘Midnight At The Oasis’).
1966, Born on this day, Stone Gossard, guitar, Pearl Jam, (1992 UK No.15 single ‘Jeremy’, 1993 US No.1 & UK No.2 album ‘Vs’, 1994 US No.1 & UK No.4 album Vitalogy’ and 1996 US No.1 & UK No.3 album ‘No Code’) Also a member of Brad.